Five tourists, two crew die in Peru plane crash at Nazca Lines

The plane (above) is said to have caught fire after hitting the ground.
PHOTO: AFP

LIMA (REUTERS) - At least seven people have died after a light aircraft crashed during a flight above the Nazca Lines archaeological site in Peru, local police and the national government said on Friday (Feb 4).

Local police said that the deceased included three Dutch tourists, two Chilean tourists, and two Peruvian members of crew.

The Ministry of Transport and Communications said in a statement that the Cessna 207 aircraft crashed in the vicinity of the Maria Reiche airport in the city of Nazca.

"As a result of the accident there have been no survivors," it said, adding that the cause of the accident is being investigated.

The head of the Nazca police, Commander Edgar Espinoza, told journalists that the plane apparently caught fire after hitting the ground.

The Nazca Lines, one of Peru's most popular tourist attractions, is a Unesco World Heritage site home to hundreds of gigantic geoglyphs dating back more than 2,000 years, showing figures that include a hummingbird, monkey, spider, pelican and whale.

The protected 400-square-kilometer region, which lies some 450km south of the capital Lima, between the towns of Nazca and Palpa, is often viewed by tourists from the sky to get the best view of the huge ancient figures.

Reuters could not immediately reach the Chilean and Dutch embassies in Peru for comment.

A handout photo shows the remains of the plane that crashed during a flight above the Nazca Lines archaeological site in Peru. PHOTO: EPA-EFE

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